Supervision for organisation consultants
by: Erik de Haan & David Birch
in: Coaching and mentoring supervision: theory and practice (Edited by Tatiana Bachkirova, Peter Jackson and David Clutterbuck). In press, 2011

Organisation consultants are increasingly engaging in supervision and shadow consulting of their consulting and executive coaching work. Supervision is making an important contribution to the professional development and quality assurance of consultants and is becoming a key differentiator in the marketplace. With the growing professionalism of the Organisation Development field, practitioners are drawn towards consulting supervision often as part of a formal qualification in organisation consulting.

Many consultants are ‘sole practitioners’, or at least operating independently in many of their assignments, which emphasises the need for time and space to reflect in a supervisory relationship. In this chapter we look at the various forms of consulting supervision, at the pros and cons of different approaches and at dilemmas that may arise for the Organisation Development supervisor. We argue that consulting supervision is a distinctive field in its own right, significantly different to coaching supervision and in some ways richer because of the additional layers of complexity.